Conor McGregor knocks out Heat mascot in bizarre promotion at NBA Finals
Jun 11, 2023, 4:31 PM
(Joe Murphy/NBAE/Getty Images)
(CNN) — A punch from UFC star Conor McGregor sent the Miami Heat’s mascot, Burnie, to the emergency room of a local hospital during the NBA Finals on Friday, according to The Athletic.
McGregor punched the performer wearing the mascot costume twice in a pre-planned skit in the third quarter during Game 4 of the NBA Finals at the Kaseya Center in Miami. The skit was meant to promote a pain relief spray, which McGregor sprayed on Burnie after the blows.
The man playing Burnie was sent home from the hospital after receiving pain medication and is doing well, according to The Athletic report, which cited a league source. CNN has not verified the details of The Athletic report.
Burnie, who sported large gold boxing gloves and a boxing robe, was punched once by McGregor and fell to the ground. Once on the ground, McGregor landed another punch before the mascot was dragged off the court.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) June 10, 2023
McGregor’s communications team had no comment when reached by CNN.
CNN has reached out to the Miami Heat and NBA for comment but did not immediately hear back.
Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra joked about the incident while speaking to reporters ahead of Monday’s Game 5 in Denver.
“It’s the Miami Heat toughness that we are talking about,” Spoelstra said. “Should’ve been allowed to take the first swing. We won’t reveal who that is but he’s tough. Take a punch and get back up. Yeah, he’s not going to miss any time.”
McGregor has not competed in a UFC event since breaking his left leg in a fight with Dustin Poirier in July 2021.
The Heat lost Friday’s game 108-95 to the Denver Nuggets. The Nuggets are leading the best-of-seven series 3-1.
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